On Saturday, New Belgium Brewing Company's bicycle circus rolled through Chicago for the fifth straight year, bringing with it a carnival celebrating cycling culture--and plenty of the Colorado-based company's beer.
The traveling festival is visiting 15 cities this year spreading a message that bicycling is as much a healthy, enjoyable past time as it is an environmentally responsible mode of transportation.
New Belgium and Chicago bicycle enthusiasts descended on Chicago's Palmer Square Saturday for the event. A $5 suggested donation for parade participants helped raise funds for West Town Bikes, a local cycling collective that does outreach work with youth in under-served communities.
About 4,500 bicycle and beer enthusiasts attended the Palmer Square event, 750 of which donated money to participate in the bicycle parade, according to a release from New Belgium. The event raised a total of $24,281 that was donated to West Town Bikes.
"With an exceptional ability to roust a city’s inner-cyclist, New Belgium brought the biggest, most enjoyable bike festival that we know of to Palmer Square,” Alex Wilson of West Town Bikes said in a statement thanking event organizers.
The tour has helped raise more than $20,000 in unrestricted funds each year for the nonprofit, according to the Red Eye. Wilson said organizers have been extremely supportive of their mission:
"The fact that we are actually putting people on bicycles is something that struck a chord with New Belgium," Wilson told the paper.
Check out shots from the tour's previous Chicago stops: